When you buy a furnace, you will pay more money if you purchase a highly efficient furnace, but you will save money on your monthly heating costs over the life of your furnace. On the other hand, if you buy a less efficient model, you will save money initially, but pay more money from month to month over the life of your furnace. Thus, the wise choice is to pay for the highly efficient furnace, but how do you know if you are getting an efficient furnace? Basically, there are two things to look for: a second heat exchanger and a variable speed motor. 

The Furnace Motor

Older furnaces and their low efficiency modern counterparts will have a one-speed motor. This means that whenever there is a need to heat your home, the motor will come on at full capacity, then shut off when it reaches the desired temperature in your home. This is equivalent to gunning your engine from stoplight to stoplight. To save more money, you want to maintain a consistent speed as much as possible. A variable speed motor allows your furnace to kick on to heat your home quickly when necessary, but to then run at lower speeds to maintain the temperature in your home for a longer period of time. This will lead to increased comfort as well as increased savings. 

The Heat Exchanger

A conventional furnace will have one heat exchanger which will extract some but not all of the heat from the exhaust gases produced by burning fuel in your furnace. The reason for this is that a conventional furnace uses a pipe to vent heat out of your home, and some heat must remain in the exhaust in order to allow it to rise up the pipe and out of your home.

A condensing furnace will have a second heat exchanger, which extracts so much heat from the gases that they condense into a liquid—thus the name of the furnace. The waste liquid will then drain out of your furnace by way of a tube designed to do just that. 

A standard furnace will have an efficiency rating of around 80%. Condensing furnaces with a variable speed motor can achieve efficiency ratings of up to 98%. Thus, you can save 18% on your monthly heating costs just by purchasing the more efficient option. When you carry those savings over the life of your furnace, it is easy to see why you should make room in your budget to buy a highly efficient furnace. Contact a company like Home Comfort Systems to learn more or to install your high efficiency furnace today.